Swiss aircraft manufacturer Pilatus has signed a contract with the Spanish Dirección General de Armamento y Material (DGAM) for the PC-21 aircraft.

The signing comes after the deal was first announced on Plataforma de Contratacion del Sector Publico (PCSP) procurement website in November last year.

With the signing of the €200m ($220m) contract, the Spanish Air Force, Ejército del Aire, has become the third in Europe to operate the PC-21 single-engine turboprop training aircraft.

Under the contract, a total of 24 next-generation trainers will be purchased along with an integrated training system, simulators, spare parts and logistics support.

The aircraft will replace the Casa C-101 jet trainers, which have been in use with the Spanish service since 1980.

Following the delivery of the aircraft, pilots will undergo advanced training with a cost-effective platform in 2021.

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By GlobalData

Pilatus chairman Oscar J Schwenk said: “As a small Swiss aircraft manufacturer I’m delighted at our repeated success in winning through over large, international competitors.

“This result is proof that, with our PC-21, we can deliver the very best training system in the world. I’m delighted to see us win a new airforce to add to our existing customer portfolio. We shall provide Ejército del Aire with the first-class customer service they are entitled to expect from Pilatus.”

This platform uses 50% less fuel than other jet trainers, making it more economically viable for training purposes. It is also designed to meet the current airforce requirements.

To date, Pilatus has sold more than 235 PC-21s to the airforces of Singapore, Switzerland, the United Arab Emirates, France, Australia and Spain.

Last month, the Royal Australian Air Force (RAAF) took delivery of its final Pilatus PC-21 pilot training aircraft.